Suprematism was a non-objective style of art developed by Kasimir Malevich in which ‘modern symbols’ such as the rectangle, triangle, and circle replaced the more conventional obsession with the human face and natural objects. Read More →

capitalisation basics

If you have ever read an old newspaper (early nineteenth century) and you look carefully at the old broadsheets.  You will notice that words are capitalised here and there and that the rules of capitalisation, some of which you will learn shortly, seem nonexistent.Read More →

Fractals are intricate geometric structures created when patterns (or pieces of patterns) are altered and duplicated at ever-diminishing scales.  Besides having a tremendously important effect across a range of sciences, fractals make a stunning picture on your tablet. Even simple shapes can quickly grow complicated when they are altered again and again.  A close look can reveal endless variations of the same design theme.Read More →

Surrealism - featured image

Surrealism was one of the most important and subversive movements of the 20th century flourished, especially in the 1920s and 1930s and provided a radical alternative to cubism’s rational and formal qualities. Unlike Dada, from which it emerged in many ways, it emphasised the positive rather than the nihilistic.Read More →

Vitruvian Man - featured image

Anthropometrics is a systematic study of human measurement that was increasingly used by designers dealing with design issues involving human movement in the decades following WWII. Their implementation of a more analytical and methodical approach to design problems had a lot in common with the techniques studied at the Hochschule für Gestaltung in Ulm from the mid-1950s to the 1960s, as well as the Design Methods trend.Read More →

Blue bowl Francois-Émile Deecorchement 925-26

Pâte de Verre (French, “glass paste”) is a material produced by grinding glass into a fine powder, adding a binder to create a paste, and adding a fluxing medium to facilitate melting. The paste is brushed or tamped into a mould, dried, and fused by firing. After annealing, the object is removed from the mould and finished.Read More →

Lithography example image

A method of printing from a design drawn directly on a slab of stone or other suitable material. The design is not raised in relief as in woodcut or incised as in line engraving, but drawn on a smooth printing surface. Initially, this surface was provided with a slab ofRead More →

Maiolica tin-glazed earthenware

Maiolica is a tin-glazed earthenware that was produced during the Renaissance in Italy. The name comes from Majorca, the island from which, in the 15th century, a lot of Hispano-Moresque tin-glazed pottery was brought into Italy. The technique of covering with a tin glaze earthenware was similar to that used elsewhere in Europe for delftware and faience.Read More →

Basse-taille

Basse-taille is a method for enamelling the graves or graves low-reliefs on a metal surface, typically gold or silver, and then covers it with translucent glazed enamel. (French: ‘low-cut’) This technique dramatises the play of light and shadow over the low-cut design and also gives the item a tone ofRead More →

Japonisme style of decorative arts

A French term used to describe a variety of European borrowings from Japanese art was Japonisme.

With the opening of trade with Japan following the expedition of the American Commodore Matthew Perry in 1853. The interest in Japanese art in the West, particularly in France, had started to develop. The artist Félix Bracquemond, a friend of the Goncourt brothers, were among the first interpreters of the style.Read More →

Affichiste

Affichiste. Name (literally ‘poster designer’) taken by the French artists and photographers Raymond Hains (1926-) and Jacques de la Villeglé (1926-), who met in 1949 and created a technique to create collages from pieces of torn-down posters during the early 1950s. These works, which they displayed for the first time in 1957, were called affiches lacérées (torn posters). Read More →

Rococo example of style

Rococo is a term used in the visual arts to characterise the light, elegant, and sensuous style that emerged in France in the early 18th century reached its apogee in the 1730s and was gradually replaced in the 1760s by the strict, moralising characteristics of Neoclassicism.Read More →

Aestheticism Featured Image

Aestheticism describes the European art movement of the late 19th century. It is centred on the doctrine that art exists alone for the sake of its beauty and that it does not have to serve any political, didactic or another purpose.

Aestheticism is diametrically opposite to the moralist belief, the belief that moralism (and everything else) should be the handmaiden of art instead of art (and everything else) being the handmaiden of morality.Read More →

Jugendstil an artistic style

The weekly magazine Jugend no 14/1896 Jugendstil, an artistic style that originated around the mid-1890s in Germany and persisted throughout the first decade of the 20th century, derived its name from the Munich magazine Die Jugend (‘Youth’), which featured designs from the Art Nouveau period. In Jugendstil, two phases canRead More →

Shagreen Glass Case

Shagreen glasses case, China 19th Century Shagreen is fish skin used as a veneer to cover furniture and accessories. Also known as galuchat and sharkskin, shagreen is the skin on the belly of the dogfish. As a generic term, it is used to mean untanned animal hides made with pebble-textured surfaces. It wasRead More →